Town Crier: Montclarions play role in Hank Williams musical

Cowboys, Hank and mama

Cowboys, Hank and mama

MONTCLARION: April 17, 2015

Tax day is behind us. Time to climb out from the paperwork and hit “the highway.”

Two Montclair performers have key roles in this weekend’s debut of the musical biography “Hank Williams: Lost Highway” at the Douglas Morrisson Theatre in Hayward. Rebecca Faiola plays Hank’s mom, “Mama Lily,” and Tom Reardon plays the role of Fred “Pap” Rose.

Hank Williams was a shooting star on the American landscape. He died in 1953 at the age of 29 — his body ravaged by back pain, addiction and the hard life of playing honky tanks and roadhouses.

But oh, man, what he left behind. Songs like “Your Cheatin’ Heart,” “Hey, Good Lookin” and “I’m so Lonesome, I Could Cry” put him in a category with legends like Elvis. Knowing the work Faiola and Reardon have done with music and theater — this should be a blockbuster production. The website for tickets and more information is

Heading south: Fans will queue up early for this one. San Jose is one of just three cities in the world hosting the trilogy performance of “Lord of the Rings” with a live American orchestra. The three “Rings” flicks won 17 Academy Awards and their scores — all 1,200 pages — will be performed by 250 musicians while their corresponding films are shown on a giant 48-by-20-foot screen. It’s this weekend at the San Jose Center for the Performing Arts:

Around town: Montclair’s attempts to protect ground floor retail are being challenged, again, this time by a senior service company that’s eyeing the empty shop at 6206 La Salle Ave., formerly occupied by Snapshot Mosaics. Nearby shop-owner and MVA President Jeff Diamond, of Farmstead Cheeses and Wines, is dead-set against the move.

“We already have enough service businesses located on the ground floor (realtors, banks and other office-type businesses),” he says, adding that every time the city grants a waiver to Montclair’s zoning regulations, it makes the Village less attractive for shoppers. “There’s lots of second-floor space available in the Village, and that’s where these types of businesses should be located.”

The leasing agent, Ellwood Properties, argues that Home Care Assistance will bring foot traffic and a valuable service to the community.

Foodie alert: The table is set for Montclair’s version of a progressive dinner. Twenty restaurants are part of Tuesday night’s Montclair Restaurant Walk — including the much-anticipated Chowhaus, finally open in the former Montclair Bistro site. You can get a passport for $25 at Safeway, US Bank, Montclair Book Tree and Viewpoint. This is a fun fundraiser for the Montclair Lions Club.

Got news? You can reach Ginny Prior by email at or on the web at


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